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Dogs saved from southern Illinois floods brought to DuPage shelters

Rat terrier puppies saved from the Metropolis, Ill. flooding will be up for adoption in next few months. (Submitted photo)

Rat terrier puppies saved from the Metropolis, Ill. flooding will be up for adoption in next few months. (Submitted photo)

Recent flooding in southern Illinois left many residents homeless and unable to take care of family pets, but thanks to a team led by Downers Grove resident Renee Cantalupo, seven stranded dogs are now in good hands.

“Several people lost their homes, so we went down there and took as many animals as we could,” Cantalupo said. “I wish we could have gotten there earlier – we didn’t get down there until the second week of flooding. Some people were living in cars with animals.”

Cantalupo traveled with a team from Downers Grove’s West Suburban Humane Society to the Metropolis, Ill., area earlier this month to rescue stranded and homeless animals. They returned with seven dogs that are now being housed by veterinary hospitals in Naperville and Downers Grove.

“Some of the animals were turned into vet clinics to be put down, others were found in the flood waters,” Cantalupo said. “They were looking for food and in bad shape – covered in fleas, ticks and a couple had stomach parasites.”

Most of the dogs will be available for adoption as soon as next week, Cantalupo said, but two of the puppies will need a few months to grow before finding new homes.

Cantalupo is a board member at West Suburban Humane Society and a member of Noah’s Wish Disaster Response team, a national group that saves animals left homeless due to natural disasters.

This isn’t the first time Cantalupo went to help animals stranded because of natural disasters. In 2005, she traveled to New Orleans to help animals left homeless by hurricane Katrina.

Cantalupo said donations to help feed and take care of the animals can be sent directly to the West Suburban Humane Society, 1901 W. Ogden Avenue, Downers Grove.

bdoyle@tribune.com

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